The Cordale Hall Railway

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Re: The Cordale Hall Railway

Postby Bilco » Mon Feb 18, 2019 4:06 pm

Nice back-story, Paul - but wrong in one particular ...

Sir Arthur Heywood had three estates take up his minimum gauge railways, not two - you forgot Berger Hall ...
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Re: The Cordale Hall Railway

Postby TrainsOnArran » Mon Feb 18, 2019 5:52 pm

Bill, that was remiss of me! My apologies to you, and also to the many other owners of estate railways that failed to make it into the Wikipedia entry for Sir Arthur Heywood.
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Re: The Cordale Hall Railway

Postby PeterH » Mon Feb 18, 2019 7:44 pm

Paul, I’d be wary of inviting female guests from Berger Hall. Kaffie, Jessica and Ambrosia would be fine, but I worry that the likes of Lady Frideswide and Mlle Etoile Michelin would prevent any eventual reconciliation with the Duchess.
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Re: The Cordale Hall Railway

Postby TrainsOnArran » Mon Feb 18, 2019 10:11 pm

There are still several ‘ladies’ in the Master Box range who have not yet been invited to Cordale. The Female Mechanics are not yet on show either. A reconciliation with the Duchess seems a long way off.

Given Cordale Hall is set about 120 years later than Berger Hall (the original, not the new, updated version), the Lady Frideswide and others are probably no longer in their prime - even in the dark, with eyes half shut!
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Re: The Cordale Hall Railway

Postby Jon Randall » Thu Feb 28, 2019 6:06 pm

Looking great Paul 8)
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Re: The Cordale Hall Railway

Postby TrainsOnArran » Mon Mar 04, 2019 11:26 am

In the last week the railway has been moved from the Guest Bedroom to the Railway Room. There used to be two levels of 00 track in the Railway Room - a four track circuit for the steam trains situated at about 5’ high, with another multi-track circuit at 3.5’ high, for diesels and third rail electric trains, such as The Brighton Belle. I have removed all the track from the lower circuit. On one side of the room, (which is about 10’ x 9’), the lower level baseboards now support my semi-portable O gauge inglenook shunting layout, built to accommodate a Dapol Terrier in the lovely K.E.S.R blue livery.

The lower level boards on the other side of the room have been removed so that The Cordale Hall Railway will fit in against the wall. This will mean duplicating the section switches so that the railway can be operated from the front. It also means photo opportunties are somewhat reduced as the layout can only be photographed from the front, and then from not very far away!

I have found time to do a little bit of construction. Every time I think I have finished painting individual stones, the Duke of Kensington decides that another building is required. He requested another small halt be built for the benefit of those wishing to visit the cottage, garage or workshop. I have duly obliged.

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Cottage Halt
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Seats will be added to the two halts once I have got some seated figures and can make sure the seats are at the correct height!

At Model Rail Scotland last weekend, I had the pleasure or meeting Andy (BackwaterScotland) and seeing Crundells Estate at first hand. Andy allowed me to take several pictures of his layout and provided lots of helpful advice about the sources of plants and flowers in his greenhouse and elsewhere on the estate. The Gaugemaster and Green Scenes stalls provided me with several bits and pieces for flower making.

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First Plants in Greenhouse
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While carrying out the aforementioned move of the railway, I found some plastic half barrels, which I think may be 4mm scale. Painted a terracotta brown, these have made quite passable plant pots. The plants on the potting bench are Gaugemaster Grass Tufts - GM149 12mm Plants green (and also yellow). The plants on the the raised bed are miniNature 998-23S Flowers red (and also white). The Gaugemaster Tufts are also in the two planters on each of the platforms. These planters are from Ten Commandments - 7mm Half Hogshead barrels.

I have also made some shelf units for the Packing Shed, Garage and Maintenance Shed.

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Red Shelves
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These were built with 1mm Plasticard and 1/8” Plastruc square rod, and spray painted with primer and Humbrol acrylic paint.

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White Shelves
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The Duke’s latest wish is to have a supply for water near the Maintenance Shed for the engines. More stonework to be painted! The idea is to have an open topped tank with water made from mdf, painted gloss black and then many coats of varnish.

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Early Stages of the Water Tank
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I expect he’ll soon want somewhere to store loco coal as well!
Paul

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Re: The Cordale Hall Railway

Postby PeterH » Mon Mar 04, 2019 7:49 pm

I love how your glasshouse turned out.
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Re: The Cordale Hall Railway

Postby Steve Holland » Mon Mar 04, 2019 8:48 pm

Your progress makes mine look positively glacial.
I have made a simple coal stage for Smallbeach, maybe something similar will satisfy the Duke. Unless he considers it to be too scruffy........

Image

As you can see, there is not much too it really. The frame is 1/4 inch square obechi (I think - but I am certain it came from a tree at some point), with the rest from balsa, mostly 3/8 inch x 1/8 inch. The bolts are Grandt Line NBW mouldings intended for O scale. Overall size is 90mm long, 60mm wide and 65mm high. Balsa is lovely stuff to distress and was initially coloured with EDM Models Weathered Wood Stain, followed by further washes with acrylics. The coal is real and fell off a full size steam loco, crushed up and held in place with dilute PVA.
Little locos will need their fires cleaning and feeding so there are also some fire irons and a couple of shovels:

Image

From left to right they are the pricker, dart, ashpan rake, clinker paddle and two shovels. The first three are made from bits of wire and scrap etch brass. Soldering is pretty much compulsory for strength, but burning fingers is optional :lol: The shovels are made from some aluminium pie tray and cocktail sticks. Colouring is again acrylics, from the Lifecolour "Rail Weathering" and "Rust" sets plus a bit of Vallejo oily steel for the worn areas.
Just pretend that you have not seen the O scale Shocvan and ex LMS brakevan lurking in the background :oops:
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Re: The Cordale Hall Railway

Postby TrainsOnArran » Mon Mar 04, 2019 9:50 pm

PeterH wrote:I love how your glasshouse turned out.

Thank you - I still need some more plants for the area between the slabs and the front windows. They will need to be a reasonable height to be seen but not so tall as to obscure the rest of the plants!

Steve Holland wrote:I have made a simple coal stage for Smallbeach, maybe something similar will satisfy the Duke. Unless he considers it to be too scruffy........

That is certainly the size I have in mind. Since this a newly restored estate railway, I probably need something that has not been so battered by use and the elements. But as a small model, your coal stage is quite magnificent. I am really impressed. And as for the tools, I can only gaze in wonder. Thank you for giving the construction details. It is things like that which make this forum such a valuable resource.

You now have me wondering whether there might be any useful tools in the Playmobil train set I bought for my first daughter’s first Christmas, when she was less than one month old! She is now 32 but some of the set is in a box in my railway room. I’m sure she won’t miss the odd shovel if she ever claims it back for her son, our first grandchild!
Last edited by TrainsOnArran on Thu Mar 07, 2019 9:18 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: The Cordale Hall Railway

Postby TrainsOnArran » Thu Mar 07, 2019 6:07 pm

Robert Burns tells that “the best laid schemes o’ mice and men gang aft aglay”. This also applies to Lordships and minions, although I’m not sure the water tower and coal stage could be described as a “best laid scheme”!

This is the tower and embryonic coal stage placed roughly in position.

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Water Tower blocking the view
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As can be seen, and really should have been self-evident in the first place, the water tower is completely blocking the view of the new halt. Given the young lady I have in mind for leaning against the halt, some may say this can only be a good thing!

http://www.creativemodels.co.uk/masterb ... 53313.html

About the only other option I can think of is to move the tank behind the rear wall of the maintenace shed, and have a small water crane next to the track. This will involve a small bit of track removal, and repositioning the insulating break and diode that prevents engines crashing into the shed.

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Front of Shed with Tank at rear
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Side and rear of shed with tank at rear
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I’ll also need to build a tank cover, or else it will be constantly filling with copper beech leaves in the autumn.

This tank cover would be a pity, or possibly a blessing, since in a whimsical moment I decided that three out of scale rubber ducks could swim in the tank, where the Duke would never see them! I tried making some rabbits last week, with leftover Milliput. The less said about them, the better!

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Rubber ducks
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Alternatively, I could summon up the courage to tell the Duke that the tank idea is not a good one, but I know he prefers “problem solvers”, not “problem staters”!
Paul

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Re: The Cordale Hall Railway

Postby TrainsOnArran » Thu Mar 07, 2019 8:24 pm

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Rubber Ducks
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Could these be the first, second and third Ducks of Kensington? :roll:
Paul

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Re: The Cordale Hall Railway

Postby TrainsOnArran » Mon Mar 11, 2019 12:37 pm

After the last post, I feel I need to do something to restore some modelling credibility!

Ever since I built the lighting rig using LED strip, I have been wondering about using something similar to illuminate the buildings. I gave this a go over the weekend.

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Inside the Garage
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The main layout lighting uses cold (daylight) white, but I decided to use warm white for the buildings. Currently the packing shed and the garage have been fitted. When I do the next building, I’ll record the process so it can be added to this thread.
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Re: The Cordale Hall Railway

Postby PeterH » Mon Mar 11, 2019 7:20 pm

TrainsOnArran wrote:After the last post, I feel I need to do something to restore some modelling credibility!

Well, first yellow ducks, now redhead birds in the garage. I wonder what goes on in the packing shed...
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Re: The Cordale Hall Railway

Postby TrainsOnArran » Tue Mar 12, 2019 4:46 pm

I promised more details on how the buildings have been illuminated. I have used LED strip light from Amazon; this particular set comes with a transformer plug to convert to 12v DC, with an in-line on/off dimmer switch.

https://www.amazon.co.uk/gp/product/B07 ... UTF8&psc=1

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LED Lighting Strip
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The building I’m going to light next is the Maintenance Shed - without ducks, redheads or any other excitement except a steam engine!

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Unlit Maintenace Shed
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Inside the Maintenance Shed
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The light strip can be cut in multiples of 5cm (2”).

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Measuring the correct length
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The strip must be cut in the places marked with a scissor symbol, ie across the copper contacts.

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Close up of strip
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All the components are sequentially numbered along the strip. R for resistor, D for (light-emitting) diode. Note that the copper terminals are marked +12v and -. From my secondary school physics, which was a long time ago, a diode allows current to pass in one direction, but not the other. A light-emitting diode emits light when the current is passing through; I’m not sure how, but probably by magic. The relevance of this is that the correct polarity must be maintained throught the entire lighting system, from the initial dimmer and through each building being lit. By this, I mean that positive (+) must be joined to positive, and negative (-) must be joined to negative.

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Light strips in place
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Here we see that two lengths of light strip have been cut and stuck to the inside of the roof. There is a peel-off tape on the back of the strip to allow the lights to be fixed to a smooth, clean surface. Note the way the strips have been laid, so that D15 on one strip and D16 on the other strip are at the same end of the roof.

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Tinning the strip ends
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The copper terminals at each end of both strips are tinned with solder. I applied a small smear of flux to the copper terminal and then added a small blob of solder with a hot iron. Make sure the solder does not form a bridge between the two copper terminals; both must be kept electrically isolated.

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Tinned wires
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Next I cut two wires to link the strips between D15 and D16. The short, bare ends of the wires were tinned with flux and a small blob of solder.

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Joining the LED strips
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The tinned end of the wire is held against the tinned copper strip and the briefest touch with the soldering iron will melt the solder and join the two. Note that I an using the standard convention of red wire for positive and black wire for negative. This is not essential, but using two colours consistently throughout should avoid problems of mixing the polarity.

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Plug and Socket
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I’m using plugs and sockets to link the system together. The wire from the dimmer ends in a socket. The wiring to the packing shed has a plug on the input side and a socket on the output side and the garage has a similar plug on input and socket on output. The maintenace shed will need a plug on input, so it can attach to the output from the garage. It will have a socket on output which the next building in the chain can plug into. The wires from the lighing strips run down the walls of the buildings and through a hole in the building floor and then directly through a hole in the baseboard. The plugs and sockets join up under the baseboard. Using this method, the buildings can be removed from the baseboard when required.

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Plug and socket internals
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I’m using stereo plugs and sockets, which mean there are three terminals in each plug and socket. I only need two of the three. Again, it is vital that polarity is maintained across the plug and socket pair. Further, I would definitely recommend wiring each plug and each socket in an identical way, so that the order of connection between buildings can be changed without messing up the polarity.

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Wired plug and socket
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Here the black and red wires have been attached to the plug and the socket which have been pushed together. The clamping tags have been squeezed round the wires to hold them firmly in place. A word of warning here - make sure the leads are long enough to join the buildings under the baseboard. (Guess why I’m stressing this point!). Before continuing to the next step, screw the covers back on the plug and socket.

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Fixing the input lead
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Tin the ends of the input lead (the one with the plug), as before, and attach the positive and negative wires to the LED strip at the end with the lowest numbered LED - D7 in this case. You did screw the cover on the plug before this, didn’t you? The wires are held in place using a hot glue gun. CAUTION - hot glue guns can burn worse than soldering irons!

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Fixing the output lead
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Tin the ends of the output lead and attach to the other end of the strip chain (D24 in this case). Use hot glue to hold the wires and direct them to the point in the roof above the intended hole in the baseboard. Remember that the roof is probably upside down at the moment, so double check (and mark the roof) to make sure you are fixing wires in the right place. (Guess how I know this, too!)

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Testing
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At this point, the system should be tested to check all is well. Ideally, test this new build in isolation before adding it into a chain with other buildings. CAUTION - as plugs get pushed into, or removed from sockets, the polarity can get briefly crossed. Only make and break connections with the power off.

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Working!
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Return the building to the layout, thread the plug and socket through the holes and connect up. Switch on and admire!
Paul

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Re: The Cordale Hall Railway

Postby PeterH » Wed Mar 13, 2019 8:48 am

Thanks for that BBB (blow-by-blow). I’ve often wondered how to use those LED striplights. You’ve shown it’s a great way to light small interiors.

I assume the Duchess insisted on the lighting, to light the dark places where the duck could get up to mischief.
Peter

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Re: The Cordale Hall Railway

Postby TrainsOnArran » Fri Mar 22, 2019 6:07 pm

It rained most of the day on Arran today, so the planned tandem ride was cancelled, and I did some construction instead.

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Raw Ingredients
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I started off with a Dapol 10’ wagon chassis (00 gauge), some plastruct strip, some coffee stirrers, kadee couplings and some chain.

By the end of the afternoon, a bulkhead wagon had materialised!

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Finished Article
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Loaded up with a Steve Bennett packing case

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Loaded Wagon
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I haven’t got any fitter in the course of today, but at least the Duke of Kensington is pleased with me! The weather looks better for Saturday and Sunday.
Paul


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